To ensure that pupils with chronic medical needs receive the health related support to enable them to be included in school life in accordance with the SEN and Disability Act.
This guidance has due regard to the following documents:
- “Managing Medicines in Schools and Early Years Settings” DfES (March 2005)
- Section 12 of the Health and Safety Procedures Manual – Oldham’s Services for Children, Young People and Families.
- Draft Policy and Guidance for Administration of Prescribed Medicines at School for Children with Chronic Medical Conditions – Oldham SEN Handbook.
Whilst all staff have a duty to take reasonable care for the health and safety of pupils in School and Nursery, there is no contractual requirement for teachers to administer prescribed medicines and therefore, any such role is voluntary on their part.
Parents have the prime responsibility for their child’s health and should provide school with full information about their child’s medical needs, including details on medicines their child needs.
- Medicines should only be brought into school or Nursery when essential.
- Please note that medicines that need to be taken three times a day can be taken in the morning, after school hours and at bedtime.
- If parents/carers wish to administer short term medication during the school day they can arrange to come into school at lunchtime to administer it themselves.
- Children who are genuinely unwell should not attend school.
- It is anticipated that children who have a short term illness requiring antibiotics will be best cared for at home.
- Medicines should always be provided in the original container as dispensed by a pharmacist and include the prescriber’s instructions for administration.
- Within school all prescribed medicines must be delivered to the Head Teacher or School Administrator. Within Nursery they should be given directly to a member of staff.
- It may be appropriate for the parent to request a second prescription so that the medicine can be kept in school.
- Parents must complete a consent form for school to administer any medicine or cream to their child.
- Staff should check that any details provided by parents are consistent with the instructions on the container.
- Medical consent forms should be updated annually at the start of each academic year or earlier if needed.
- Staff must keep a record of all medicines administered to children, including the time and dosage. For asthma medication this information will be kept in the plastic packets which contain each child’s inhalers. For any other medication the forms will be kept centrally in the office in the file marked ‘Medical Information’
- Parents/carers who have children in the Foundation Stage (Nursery and Reception Class) will be asked to sign the record at the office at the end of the day to acknowledge the entry and that they have been informed.
- Staff should never administer a non-prescribed medicine to a child unless there is specific prior written permission from the parent.
- No child will be given medicines without their parent’s written consent.
- If in doubt about any procedure staff should not administer the medicines but check with the parents.
- Within school, wherever possible and appropriate for the child, pupils should be encouraged to self-administer prescribed medicines in an appropriate place, under supervision of an authorised member of staff.
- Large volumes of medicine should not be stored.
- School will only store, supervise and administer medicine that has been prescribed for an individual child.
- Medicines should be stored strictly in accordance with product instructions (paying particular note to temperature) and in the original container in which dispensed.
- Staff should ensure that medicine is clearly labelled with the name of the child, the name and dose of the medicine and the frequency of administration.
- All emergency medicines, such as asthma inhalers and adrenaline pens, should be kept in the school office, readily available for when needed.
- Where medicines need to be refrigerated they can be kept in a refrigerator containing food but should be in an airtight container and clearly labelled. There should be restricted access to a refrigerator holding medicines. In our school the refrigerator within the staff room is used for this purpose.
Hygiene and Infection Control in School and Nursery
- Staff should always use protective gloves and take care when dealing with blood or other body fluids.
- Soiled dressings should be disposed of in a plastic bag and placed in the pedal bin in the medical room.
- Within School we follow the ‘Guidance on Infection Control in Schools and Nurseries’ issued by the Department of Health.
- This advises that children who have had diarrhoea and /or vomiting should not return to school within 48 hours after the diarrhoea and vomiting have stopped.
- Advice and information about other infectious diseases and the time that children are expected to remain off school can be obtained from Health Professionals or from school.
Disposal of Medicines
- Staff should not dispose of medicines. Parents are responsible for ensuring that date-expired medicines are returned to a pharmacy for safe disposal.
- Parents should also collect medicines held at the end of each term, apart from long term medication which should be collected at the end of the school year.
- Sharps boxes should always be used for the disposal of needles. The sharps box is to be kept in the medical room.
Long Term Medical Needs
- It is very important that staff within school have sufficient information about the medical condition of any child with long term medical needs.
- A record of children’s medical information is kept in the front of each class register. Supply teacher’s need to be made aware of this. At different times of the day other staff may be responsible for the children, such as mid-day supervisors. It is important that they are also made aware of any medical needs, provided with advice and given any training needed.
- Where needed a written Health Care Plan will be developed involving relevant members of staff, parents, and where appropriate, relevant health professionals.
- A copy of these Health Care Plans will be kept in the class SEN File which should be kept readily available, especially for supply teachers. A second copy will be kept centrally in the ‘Medical Information’ file , held in the Office.
- School will seek to make any reasonable adjustments they might make to enable children with medical needs to participate fully and safely on visits.
- It may be that an additional supervisor, a parent or another volunteer might be needed to accompany a particular child.
- Where possible a qualified first aider should attend visits.
- Staff supervising excursions should always be aware of any medical needs and relevant emergency procedures.
- Permission slips and relevant Health Care Plans should be taken on visits in the event of the information being needed in an emergency.
- Staff need to take asthma inhalers and any other medication which may be needed by a child whilst on the visit.
- Any restrictions on a child’s ability to participate in PE should be recorded in their individual Health Care Plan.
- All staff should know how to call the emergency services.
- Guidance on calling an ambulance is pinned up on the notice board in the Office. If a parent cannot be contacted or arrive in time a member of staff should always accompany a child taken to hospital by ambulance and should stay until the parent arrives.
- Staff should never take children to hospital in their own car; it is safer to call an ambulance.
- Individual Health Care Plans should include instructions as to how to manage a child in an emergency.
- Within school we have two qualified First Aiders, but when not available all staff have a duty of care.
- All staff have completed a basic first aid course.
- A Health Care Plan may reveal the need for some staff to have further information about a medical condition or specific training in administering a particular type of medicine or in dealing with emergencies.
- Staff should not give medicines without appropriate training where needed. At least two staff should receive appropriate training which will be updated as necessary.
- All staff should receive basic first aid training which should be updated as necessary.
- Staff should always treat medical information confidentially
Download the Health Care Plan here